Author Kjell Askildsen is dead, reports VG

Author Kjell Askildsen died on Thursday, aged 91, reports VG.

Publisher Ingeri Engelstad in October publishing says the newspaper that Askildsen died peacefully on Thursday night with his wife Gina Giertsen by his side.

He died one week before he was 92 years old.


Kjell Askildsen, who grew up in Mandal, was known for his sober and minimalist style. He made his debut in 1953 with the collection of short stories “Hereafter I follow you all the way home”, but is perhaps best known for “Thomas F’s last notes to the public” from 1983.

He has received several awards, among them Brage’s honorary award, the Aschehoug Prize, the Dobloug Prize and the Critics’ Prize – and he was considered by many to be Norway’s foremost short story writer.

Askildsen has also written novels, including the short novel «Surroundings» (1969), which has also been made into a film.

He published his latest book (Friendship Award) at the age of 86 in 2015.

Kjell Askildsen’s books have been translated into more than 30 languages.

«The author’s author»

He was long regarded as an “author”. Askildsen grew up in a pietistic environment in Mandal where the fear of perdition characterized everyday life and made strong differences between the Christian people and the working class.

The novel Surroundings (1969) in particular appears to be a highlight within the modernist novel tradition in Norway, according to Wikipedia.

In 2006, the short story collection Thomas F’s latest notes to the public was named the best Norwegian fiction book in the last 25 years by Dagbladet.

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Small but powerful production

Askildsen was considered a picky writer with a small but powerful production.

Askildsen’s short story art is today valued in Norway and in several other countries as works of art about how people live together, how they endure when something goes wrong, or in ordinary everyday life, writes Large Norwegian encyclopedia.


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